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apollo x16 for synth-based home studio? Audio Interfaces
Old 4 weeks ago
  #61
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xanax's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisso View Post
Professionals, all at the same time? I hardly ever see it.
well I certainly do. just tracking a drum machine will take 4-8 inputs.

what pro has the time to track drums individually doing passes?

all the pros i know that record OTB have got 8 input interfaces minimum and use patch bays with them.

they could probably get away with 6x. not 2x (unless on the road or mainly ITB).
Old 4 weeks ago
  #62
Quote:
Originally Posted by NickInhofe View Post
thanks for the input and discussion everyone! I've decided to go with the x8p. Despite my misunderstanding of how the apollos work, believe it or not I've been doing this for a long time and understand the workflow I need. I did the 'record one thing at time' thing way back in the day when I was feeding my old behringer mixer into a soundblaster card on my pc in the 90s. Having many inputs suits how I write music.

With the apollo x8p, I'm losing a few inputs off of my current TC Konnekt 48, but hopefully getting a big upgrade in quality. In reality I mainly use 9 out of the 12 inputs on the konnekt at any one time and have a workaround for that missing input. I'm also losing the crazy thunberbolt 3 -> thunderbolt 2 -> firewire 800 -> firewire 400 chain I've got going from my iMac, which I'm really looking forward to.

Getting clarity on the role of the apollo's preamps, considering the ability to daisy chain used legacy apollo units, lack of headphone out on the x16 and the price, the x8p seems like a better fit.

I appreciate the discussion here and do agree that everybody's use case is going to be different. Getting lectured on 'the pros only do it this way' makes me roll my eyes a bit but a worthwhile conversation nonetheless.
I was in the same boat as you and ended up getting both the 8P and 16 mkII. I received my 16 first and was IMMEDIATELY happy I purchased the 8P. The 16 has tons of line inputs and excellent converters, but the lack of flexibility (1/4" or 2-ch AES only, no HP, etc) definitely bit me for the first few weeks while I waited for the 8P.

Now I center my live rig around the 8P and use the 16 to connect to patch panels on a sidecar rack on the far side of my studio. I use the API Vision Channel Strip on most of the unison preamps on the 8P as well as the first plugin slot on each line input on the 16. Since I monitor everything through my DAW, the realtime benefit of the unison inputs is not realized in my setup, but it's nice to have an extra slot in rare cases where I stack UAD-2 plugins on the raw channel in the Apollo Console. In practical, day-to-day use, I use the API Vision and maybe 2-3 insert EQs or compressors in Apollo Console. Most of my other UAD-2 plugins run in the DAW (offloaded to either Apollo or a Satellite) for MIDI mapping and parameter automation.

The UAD-2 plugin ecosystem gets expensive quickly, so I encourage you to wishlist the plugins you're interested in, check the uadforum for historical sale prices, and buy a 3/6/10-pack vouchers along with your hardware purchase for the discount. I ended up buying two 10-packs for $2000 with my hardware purchases and saved around $1800 compared to buying them on their "best ever" sale price.

Regarding expanding the 8P, you may be able to do this using your existing Studio Konnekt 48. I'm not very familiar with that model, but poking through the specs it looks like it has ADAT/SMUX outputs. If it has the ability to route a line in to an ADAT/SMUX output, you could set up a static template to map 8 inputs to the 8 ADAT (48kHz) or 8 S/MUX (96kHz) outputs. The Apollo 8P will support either rate on its ADAT/SMUX inputs. You will have to send BNC world clock from the 8P to the Studio Konnekt and set the SK to use external clock.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #63
Yes, in the end , 8ch interfaces are the most common.
I do see people tracking one instrument at a time.
A lot of people are using software and samples for drums. If you watch Future Music, Fact TV etc, most people are dropping audio from their hard drive straight on to a track. Not programming hardware drum machines.
Some people obviously track drum machines, but even then people still might record multiple passes, just to make sure each sound is perfectly recorded.
Yes, there are exceptions.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #64
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xanax View Post
well I certainly do. just tracking a drum machine will take 4-8 inputs.

what pro has the time to track drums individually doing passes?

all the pros i know that record OTB have got 8 input interfaces minimum and use patch bays with them.

they could probably get away with 6x. not 2x (unless on the road or mainly ITB).
Definitely. I track entire arrangements in one pass. Even scratch fx. So sometimes it’s 24-36 channels depending.

Once it’s in the DAW, I can mix the crap out of it.

I build my music on my hardware boxes by and large. Even sample loops from soft synths and SD3 go to the OT2, RYTMs or Digitakt.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #65
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xanax View Post
well I certainly do. just tracking a drum machine will take 4-8 inputs.

what pro has the time to track drums individually doing passes?

all the pros i know that record OTB have got 8 input interfaces minimum and use patch bays with them.

they could probably get away with 6x. not 2x (unless on the road or mainly ITB).
I don't buy the notion that a 'pro' doesn't have time to do separate takes, particularly in a home studio. Is some guys with hardware synths' time really that critical? More so than that of musicians playing traditional instruments?

As I said earlier in the thread, I think there's a lot of electronic musicians with a real lack of actual studio experience - The idea of only of only having time for one take should ring alarm bells as far as I'm concerned. That's far from 'pro'.
Have seen some pretty awful behaviour by guys who are too used to their home studio setup whilst working with other musicians and have these attitudes that are actually quite detrimental to achieving anything, particularly towards those who've never been in that environment.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #66
Quote:
Originally Posted by xanax View Post
well I certainly do. just tracking a drum machine will take 4-8 inputs.
tracking my drum machines sometimes takes between 8-12 inputs, depending on the complexity of the drum track.

everything else is just overdubbing after that.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #67
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My plan is to do it on the cheap with two Delta 1010s and an Audiophile 192. Very old tech but it still works. PCI MIDI too. If I wanted to spend proper money on this I'd get an RME Raydat PCI Express card plus some ADAT I/O racks like the ADA8200. UMC1820 and an ADA8200 is another option.

As for "one track at a time" vs "capture the lot", it's a matter of personal preference. For an OTB mix you need the outs so might as well plumb the inputs in as well.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #68
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Quote:
Originally Posted by haze015 View Post
I don't buy the notion that a 'pro' doesn't have time to do separate takes, particularly in a home studio. Is some guys with hardware synths' time really that critical? More so than that of musicians playing traditional instruments?

As I said earlier in the thread, I think there's a lot of electronic musicians with a real lack of actual studio experience - The idea of only of only having time for one take should ring alarm bells as far as I'm concerned. That's far from 'pro'.
Have seen some pretty awful behaviour by guys who are too used to their home studio setup whilst working with other musicians and have these attitudes that are actually quite detrimental to achieving anything, particularly towards those who've never been in that environment.
Ok looks like we got a winner here..

Let me ask you this: why would a pro or anyone else for that matter who can afford a decent multi input interface go through the trouble of tracking drum machine parts one by one?

You think a pro drummer goes in the studio and lays down a kick for 6 minutes, then adds the snare on second pass, then hihat etc??????

If anything doing it that way would surely kill the groove (especially with dodgy DAW clocks).

Doing things the "hard way" isn't always the best way you know.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #69
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xanax View Post
Ok looks like we got a winner here..

Let me ask you this: why would a pro or anyone else for that matter who can afford a decent multi input interface go through the trouble of tracking drum machine parts one by one?

You think a pro drummer goes in the studio and lays down a kick for 6 minutes, then adds the snare on second pass, then hihat etc??????

If anything doing it that way would surely kill the groove (especially with dodgy DAW clocks).

Doing things the "hard way" isn't always the best way you know.
There are classic songs that were recorded exactly like that - Heart Of Glass by Blondie is easily the most famous example.

Also with a drum kit, there are multiple microphones, quite often see 3 just for the kick alone. With a drum machine, you could utilise a number of the sounds to created layered versions of each sound, the Vermona DRM1 is particularly great for this. Or with say a RYTM, got up to 8-voice polyphony, each with its own sample. Restricting yourself to just using say, the Kick for kicks is hardly the most creative use of these machines, just the drawback is doing one sound at a time. Also if you like to get hands-on, easier to have both hands focus on one instrument/sound at a time.

MIDI timing will be more heavily affected by the number of instruments used at the same time, particularly when daisy-chained. One at a time would be tighter. Less data being recorded at a time would mean its easier to use higher sample rates and lower buffers.

And yes, of course the hard way is not the best way, but there are situations where you just have to and a 'pro' will knuckle down and get on with it and will be prepared for it. Until human cloning exists, the only way there's 4+ simultaneous recordings of me playing guitar is done by doing take-after-take, if I'm playing keys, got to do that separately. Sadly there's only one of me :(
Old 4 weeks ago
  #70
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xanax's Avatar
Lol.. that Blondie track was done that way so the drummer could keep up with a 120BPM CR78 drum machine. Hardly what I'd consider a common way of recording.

But ok sure let's just agree that there are several methods of tracking into your DAW system. I don't have a set way myself, it varies depending on project.

But what I ask you is this: why restrict yourself to only 2-tracks ? There just might be that time when you wanna jam on several units no?

You don't buy an interface every day.. especially at UAD pricing. so getting back to the OP of this thread, I would always recommend the most inputs you can afford.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #71
Quote:
Originally Posted by haze015 View Post
MIDI timing will be more heavily affected by the number of instruments used at the same time, particularly when daisy-chained. One at a time would be tighter.
nah, some folks are using USAMO or Innerclock to keep all their machines and timing tight.

drummers like warren cann (ultravox), rusty egan (visage) or phil collins have played full kits along with drum machines and not tracked one drum sound at a time.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #72
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drockfresh's Avatar
Just a heads up I heard people are dumping really nice MADI gear as studios upgrade to Dante and other networked protocols.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #73
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A good friend of mine (a mentor) worked at Power Station in the 70s and 80s before moving to NBC to get a good retirement.

He said they always tracked the live band and then did overdubs.

He said they would also run drum machines through loudspeakers and m/s config a couple of expensive condensers and use an (eventide?) pitch detune ... on Madonna’s drum machines beats. You know, whoever her producer was.

So, this idea that everything is 4,564 tracks in ProTools is simply a sign of the times.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #74
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drockfresh View Post
Just a heads up I heard people are dumping really nice MADI gear as studios upgrade to Dante and other networked protocols.
I could NOT get Dante to work for me man!

I don’t know how they do it.

Although, I was using the USB/firewire/etc to Dante software.

Maybe a Dante enabled device would be a breeze.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #75
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Quote:
Originally Posted by guyacier View Post
I could NOT get Dante to work for me man!

I don’t know how they do it.

Although, I was using the USB/firewire/etc to Dante software.

Maybe a Dante enabled device would be a breeze.
Yeah Madi is supposed to be bullet proof reliable and proven. But it’s also mature tech.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #76
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drockfresh View Post
Yeah Madi is supposed to be bullet proof reliable and proven. But it’s also mature tech.
Software | Audinate

I was using Via with the controller.

Thie was prior to getting my RME UFXplus.

On my RME UFXplus, I run 96 channels via MADI on the SSL Alpha Link, 32 Apogee and UA via ADAT and another 24 analog via RME.

The MADI is 128 channels but I have 96 setup. I don’t use them all but I have plenth of spare inputs and outputs when I need them.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #77
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Quote:
Originally Posted by guyacier View Post
Software | Audinate

I was using Via with the controller.

Thie was prior to getting my RME UFXplus.

On my RME UFXplus, I run 96 channels via MADI on the SSL Alpha Link, 32 Apogee and UA via ADAT and another 24 analog via RME.
RME is the best. Unfortunately I have the UFX2 which has no Madi.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #78
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drockfresh View Post
RME is the best. Unfortunately I have the UFX2 which has no Madi.
I spent the extra cash just to make sure I could swap out converters in the future.

I found a good deal on mine though. $2200 sealed. They seem to be going for $2800 now!

The MADI was a real bonus.

I found an SSL Alpha Link with the Black Lion mod for $900. So for $3k I had 36 analog in and out plus an additional 10 banks of ADAT. I stuck a pair of Apogee X series on 4 of them and a UA 4-710d on 1.

The RME Totalmix handled it all with ease. I route everything wherever I want to via the Totalmix and my patchbays.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #79
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xanax View Post
Lol.. that Blondie track was done that way so the drummer could keep up with a 120BPM CR78 drum machine. Hardly what I'd consider a common way of recording.

But ok sure let's just agree that there are several methods of tracking into your DAW system. I don't have a set way myself, it varies depending on project.

But what I ask you is this: why restrict yourself to only 2-tracks ? There just might be that time when you wanna jam on several units no?

You don't buy an interface every day.. especially at UAD pricing. so getting back to the OP of this thread, I would always recommend the most inputs you can afford.
I didn't say anything about restricting oneself intentionally, just making a point the slightly OTT notion that 'pros' don't have time working with synths & drum machines in their home studios to track one instrument at a time if needs be is kind of nonsense. Basically what pro doesn't actually have time to overdub & layer recordings at home?

As to why you would, I guess the £1500-2000 difference between the Twin's & flagship Apollo's, assuming we're after one of the UAD interfaces specifically, is that money better spend elsewhere? Depends really on how important recording at home is to what you do and where the rest of your setup is at. But that's a really nice synth/guitar/bass/amp/microphone/effects unit right there.

And the point I made earlier in the thread was exactly that; if you're jamming, it is nice to record everything live if you can. But that takes us back to my whole point here, surely if you've not got time to record one thing at a time at home, how come you have time to be pratting about jamming?

Its just a nice luxury to have if you can afford it, lets not pretend its anything more than that.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #80
Quote:
Originally Posted by xanax View Post
Ok looks like we got a winner here..

Let me ask you this: why would a pro or anyone else for that matter who can afford a decent multi input interface go through the trouble of tracking drum machine parts one by one?

You think a pro drummer goes in the studio and lays down a kick for 6 minutes, then adds the snare on second pass, then hihat etc??????
:
On your first question - simple - because pros want to get everything right. So most of the time in electronic music the parts are tracked one at a time, with the perfect gain staging etc. Yes, if someone is tracking an entire part on drum machine it makes sense to do it all in one go, but I think it’s rare for pro electronic musicians to make their drum track from one machine in this era.
More common to build their rhythm track from a variety of sources - samples, software, loops and maybe some drum machine.
On your second question - yes, some records have been made with the drummer recording each drum separately. Why? Same answer, to get it right. Get the part perfectly in time, get the sound perfect.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #81
I also think by far the most common production method in electronic music is to record as you write.
If I come up with a great bass part, or chord sequence, I record it then move on.
As I said, by far the most people are combining in the box with a few pieces of hardware.
This is a quick way of working.
A slower way of working is to build all your parts, including the song structure, any mutes, any dynamics. It's ton of more complex work just to record a whole performance in one shot at the end.

Of course if you are only recording jams, with no real structure, no dynamics and no parts coming and going, it's probably fine.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #82
Quote:
Originally Posted by Syn303 View Post
nah, some folks are using USAMO or Innerclock to keep all their machines and timing tight.
Yes I do that, but record each part one at a time.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Syn303 View Post
drummers like warren cann (ultravox), rusty egan (visage) or phil collins have played full kits along with drum machines and not tracked one drum sound at a time.
Sure, I've done both. Whatever it takes to get the recording right.
This debate is about home studios and electronic music, not about tracking drum kits in commercial studios.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #83
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xanax's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by haze015 View Post
I didn't say anything about restricting oneself intentionally, just making a point the slightly OTT notion that 'pros' don't have time working with synths & drum machines in their home studios to track one instrument at a time if needs be is kind of nonsense. Basically what pro doesn't actually have time to overdub & layer recordings at home?

As to why you would, I guess the £1500-2000 difference between the Twin's & flagship Apollo's, assuming we're after one of the UAD interfaces specifically, is that money better spend elsewhere? Depends really on how important recording at home is to what you do and where the rest of your setup is at. But that's a really nice synth/guitar/bass/amp/microphone/effects unit right there.

And the point I made earlier in the thread was exactly that; if you're jamming, it is nice to record everything live if you can. But that takes us back to my whole point here, surely if you've not got time to record one thing at a time at home, how come you have time to be pratting about jamming?

Its just a nice luxury to have if you can afford it, lets not pretend its anything more than that.
Sorry but you seem to have a very narrow-minded view on production techniques..

Surely you must be able to realize there are different approaches, different workflows & different setups in the world of music production.

Sometimes you might overdub, sometimes you might be jamming on multiple units, often you'll be doing both. One doesn't negate the other.

If you limit yourself to a Twin, well you are essentially stuck with overdubbing parts. And hence will be wasting time tracking things like a drum machine if you need to process individual parts when that could have been done in one pass and then on to the other.

Now as far as "money better spent elsewhere" I also disagree with that notion. As i said you don't buy an interface every day. Better to buy one with at least 4/6/8 inputs and then gradually expand your studio by adding synths & other instruments imo.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #84
Quote:
Originally Posted by xanax View Post

Now as far as "money better spent elsewhere" I also disagree with that notion. As i said you don't buy an interface every day. Better to buy one with at least 4/6/8 inputs and then gradually expand your studio by adding synths & other instruments imo.
Only is you use them.
99% of the time I'm using one or two inputs.
As I said, if you watch any 'In The Studio' or Fact Magazine videos, the artists are using a lot of software and samples off their computer hard drive. They build up the track part by part, recording the stereo outputs of their synths into two channels of interface.
Yes, people work in different ways, but owning 32 channels of audio interface and recording all your hardware all at once is very much the exception rather than the norm.

Watching production videos is not my only experience, I've been working in studios since 1981.
The ultimate goal is to have the best quality audio you can. Better to own a single HQ interface, either with 2 or 8 channels, than 16 to 32 channels of prosumer audio interface.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #85
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xanax's Avatar
Depends what type of genre you follow but actually most techno/house artists on those channels jam with huge hardware setups..









I do agree with you that quality > quantity but since we are in a UA thread "prosumer audio interface" is pretty much off-topic.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #86
Yeah, I've watched all those and they are still recording one part at a time (mostly), and those big hardware set ups are the exception, not the norm.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #87
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xanax's Avatar
Watch them again, especially the first one with Magda " the whole deal of the studio is setup so we can JAM. come alone or with friends. hit record & jam for 10 minutes. or 2 hours."

BTW, have you followed these threads? there has never been so much hardware & drum machines etc available. Those big hardware set ups are the norm in most pro tech/house studios. Maybe not the big mainstream ones who rely more on VSTs.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #88
I don't need to. I've watched them carefully before. I like what they are doing. But they are all by far the exception.
Most pros in this area are using a lot of software, and using a few pieces of exceptional hardware, and writing and recording as they go along.
Most are NOT jamming huge hardware rigs and recording everything in one go at the end.
Sure, there are some people who sometimes work in the way you are describing. I've never disputed that.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #89
Huge hits made, one part at a time, with heavy use of software sampling, even in a studio with a decent amount of hardware.
I doubt this guy needs more than 8ch of audio interface, and probably records 2ch most of the time:


Typical electronic set up. Mix of software and hardware:
Old 4 weeks ago
  #90
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Different strokes for different folks
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